Legislature(2001 - 2002)

04/15/2002 01:57 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                       April 15, 2002                                                                                           
                          1:57 PM                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
TAPE HFC 02 - 83, Side A                                                                                                        
TAPE HFC 02 - 83, Side B                                                                                                        
TAPE HFC 02 - 84, Side A                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams called the House  Finance Committee meeting                                                                   
to order at 1:57 PM.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Eldon Mulder, Co-Chair                                                                                           
Representative Bill Williams, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Con Bunde, Vice-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Eric Croft                                                                                                       
Representative John Davies                                                                                                      
Representative Richard Foster                                                                                                   
Representative John Harris                                                                                                      
Representative Bill Hudson                                                                                                      
Representative Ken Lancaster                                                                                                    
Representative Jim Whitaker                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Moses                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Representative   John   Coghill;    Rynnieva   Moss,   Staff,                                                                   
Representative  Coghill; Terri  Lauterbach, Attorney,  Alaska                                                                   
Legislative  Affairs  Agency,  Juneau; Amy  Erickson,  Staff,                                                                   
Representative   Murkowski;  Roxanne   Stewart,   Legislative                                                                   
Liaison, Department  of Administration; Denny  Dewitt, Staff,                                                                   
Representative Eldon  Mulder; Jerry Madden,  United Southeast                                                                   
Alaska   Gillnetters,   Juneau;  David   Bedford,   Executive                                                                   
Director,  Southeast Alaska  Seiners,  Juneau; Amy  Erickson,                                                                   
Representative Murkowski;  Jerry McCune, United  Fishermen of                                                                   
Alaska,    Juneau;   Theresa    Tanoury,   Family    Services                                                                   
Administrator,  Division   of  Family  and   Youth  Services,                                                                   
Department  of  Health  and Social  Services;  Mike  Tibbles,                                                                   
Staff, Representative Williams.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Sue Aspelund, Executive Director,  Cordova District Fishermen                                                                   
United,  Cordova;   Paul  A.  Shadura  II,   Kenai  Peninsula                                                                   
Fishermen's   Association,   Kenai;    Shari   Paul,   Alaska                                                                   
Children's Trust; Terri Lauterbach,                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 252    "An  Act relating  to the  construction of  certain                                                                   
          statutes  relating  to  children; relating  to  the                                                                   
          scope of duty and standard  of care for persons who                                                                   
          provide services to  certain children and families;                                                                   
          and providing for an effective date."                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB 252 (FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                     
          a  "do  pass" recommendation  and  with  previously                                                                   
          published fiscal note: HSS (#1).                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
HB 504    "An Act relating to  the wages of people working in                                                                   
          the fisheries business."                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB 504 (FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                     
          a  "do pass"  recommendation  and with  a new  zero                                                                   
          fiscal note by the House  Finance Committee for the                                                                   
          Department of Labor and Workforce Development.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB 509    "An  Act   relating  to  Alaska   children's  trust                                                                   
          registration   plates;   and   providing   for   an                                                                   
          effective date."                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB 509 (STA) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                     
          a  new  fiscal impact  note  by the  Department  of                                                                   
          Administration.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 515    "An  Act relating  to missions  and measures  to be                                                                   
          applied  to certain  expenditures by the  executive                                                                   
          branch  of state government  and the University  of                                                                   
          Alaska  and   by  the  judicial  branch   of  state                                                                   
          government from the  state operating budget for the                                                                   
          fiscal  year ending  June 30,  2003; and  providing                                                                   
          for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB 515 (FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                     
          a  "do pass"  recommendation  and with  a new  zero                                                                   
          fiscal note by the House  Finance Committee for all                                                                   
          departments.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CSSCR 28(RES)                                                                                                                   
          Establishing the Joint  Legislative Salmon Industry                                                                   
          Task Force.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
          HCS CSSCR  28 (FIN)  was REPORTED out  of Committee                                                                   
          with  a "do  pass" recommendation  and  with a  new                                                                   
          fiscal  impact  note  by  the  Legislative  Affairs                                                                   
          Agency.                                                                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 252                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act   relating  to  the  construction   of  certain                                                                   
     statutes relating to children;  relating to the scope of                                                                   
     duty  and  standard  of care  for  persons  who  provide                                                                   
     services to certain children and families; and                                                                             
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
RYNNIEVA  MOSS, STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE  COGHILL testified  in                                                                   
support  of  the  legislation.   She  provided  members  with                                                                   
proposed committee  substitute, work draft  LS0454\R, 4/12/02                                                                   
(copy on file). She reviewed the  committee substitute. A new                                                                   
section was added on page 5, line 3 to state:                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     The state  and the  state's and agents  may not  be held                                                                   
     civilly liable for money  damages for failure to perform                                                                   
     a duty  imposed under this  chapter solely on  the basis                                                                   
     that  the duty was  not performed  within a time  period                                                                   
     specified under this chapter.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss  maintained that children  and their  parents should                                                                   
be able to sue  the state when it wrongful  abuses its power.                                                                   
She observed that  the Division of Family and  Youth Services                                                                   
has more power over more vulnerable  Alaskans than any agency                                                                   
in government. The sponsor, Representative  Coghill, believes                                                                   
that means they should be held most accountable.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Moss observed  that remedies  for  children and  parents                                                                   
should   include  equitable   relief,   which  the   proposed                                                                   
committee substitute  does. This means  that they have  a way                                                                   
to make  government do what is  right. They should  also have                                                                   
the  ability  to recover  civil  damages  for losses  due  to                                                                   
government's  failure  to  fulfill  duties  assigned  by  the                                                                   
legislature.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss referred  to language recommended by  the Department                                                                   
of  Law.   She  asserted   that  the  department's   language                                                                   
continues to protect government  from full accountability for                                                                   
wrongful  conduct  that  can have  a  devastating  impact  on                                                                   
children and  families. It would  allow government  to escape                                                                   
liability  for  the failure  to  comply  with the  duties  in                                                                   
statute. The  duties include  the duty of  the state  when it                                                                   
acts  as  a  child  custodian  to fulfill  the  duties  of  a                                                                   
custodian just as parents are  expected. These duties include                                                                   
providing  for safety,  care,  nurturance,  and education  of                                                                   
children. When  the state  takes a child  from its  family it                                                                   
should be fully accountable while  performing the same duties                                                                   
that  parents  are legally  obliged  to  provide.  Government                                                                   
should be more  alert and assertive in performing  its duties                                                                   
to children, families and parents.  Because the Department of                                                                   
Law has failed to come up with  statistics on monetary suits,                                                                   
they  are assuming  that  there are  very  few cases  brought                                                                   
against  the  Division  of Family  and  Youth  Services.  She                                                                   
maintained  that the  legislation  places  into statute  what                                                                   
most  Alaskans  already  believe   is  the  case:  that  when                                                                   
government takes  a child into custody, they  are accountable                                                                   
for their actions on as close  to as level a playing field as                                                                   
parents are liable. The proposed  committee substitute allows                                                                   
flexibility  in  meeting  timelines  in  dealing  with  court                                                                   
requirements, something  that parents do not  have. While the                                                                   
Division  of Family  and  Youth Services  does  not have  the                                                                   
ability to level  monetary damages for failure  to care, they                                                                   
have the  more extreme  ability to  take their children  away                                                                   
from their parents.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Harris MOVED  to ADOPT  work draft  LS0454\R,                                                                   
4/12/02. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Hudson  stated his  intention  to change  the                                                                   
effective  date  from  July  1,  2002 to  July  1,  2003  for                                                                   
sections  3-6 and  8-9. He noted  that this  would delay  the                                                                   
implementation   of   the  "intensive   family   preservation                                                                   
services"  until  2003,  while   allowing  the  study  to  go                                                                   
forward.  He  noted  that he  supports  the  legislation  but                                                                   
observed that there have been  concerns regarding the date of                                                                   
implementation.   He   expressed    concern   that   a   2002                                                                   
implementation date would disrupt  current services. There is                                                                   
no new funding  for the provisions. He observed  that 24-hour                                                                   
services   would  require  additional   staffing.   The  next                                                                   
legislature could  change to an earlier  implementation date.                                                                   
Sections 7  and 10  would retain the  July 1, 2002  effective                                                                   
date.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative John  Coghill spoke in support  of the delayed                                                                   
effective date.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Hudson  MOVED to  ADOPT  Amendment 1:  delete                                                                   
"2002" and insert "2003" on page 7, line 5.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Davies  referred   to  language  on  page  4,                                                                   
beginning  on  line  17:  The  department  need  not  provide                                                                   
services to an otherwise eligible  family if (1) services are                                                                   
not available in  the community in which the  family resides;                                                                   
or (2)  services cannot  be provided  because the program  is                                                                   
filled  to capacity."  He concluded that  the concerns  being                                                                   
raised  by  the  amendment  are   already  addressed  in  the                                                                   
legislation.  The legislation  reflects  the practicality  of                                                                   
whatever funding is available.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hudson  responded that persons  under contract                                                                   
to  provide  the  services  feel that  there  is  an  implied                                                                   
mandate  to  move  into  the  intensive  family  preservation                                                                   
services  to the  harm of  the  existing services,  primarily                                                                   
because only  $50 thousand  dollars was  added in the  fiscal                                                                   
note (to provide for the study).                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative  John  Davies   argued  that  there  might  be                                                                   
opportunities for the department  to implement the provisions                                                                   
and questioned why prevent them  from doing so when they can.                                                                   
He pointed out that there is already  language that clarifies                                                                   
that there  is no requirement  to do so  if the money  is not                                                                   
available.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
TERRI  LAUTERBACH,   ATTORNEY,  ALASKA  LEGISLATIVE   AFFAIRS                                                                   
AGENCY,   JUNEAU,   provided    information   regarding   the                                                                   
legislation.  She  explained  that section  10,  which  would                                                                   
still  go  into   effect  on  July  1,  2002,   reflects  the                                                                   
definition  of  intensive  family   services  in  section  8.                                                                   
Section 8  only includes the  definition and should  have the                                                                   
same effective date.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Hudson concluded  that sections 3  - 6  and 9                                                                   
would be  delayed to July  1, 2003.  Sections 8 and  10 would                                                                   
have a July 1, 2002.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Lauterbach  noted that section  7 has not  been addressed                                                                   
and would therefore be a 90-day effective date.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams repeated the motion to amend:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 11.  Sections 1 and 2 of this Act take effect                                                                       
     under AS 01.10.070(c).                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 12.  Sections 8 and 10 of this Act take effect                                                                      
     July 1, 2002.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 12.  Sections 3-6 and 9 of this Act take effect                                                                     
     July 1, 2003.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss observed that the sponsor  would prefer section 7 to                                                                   
have an immediate effective date.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Bunde requested the amendment in writing.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 252 was HELD in committee until later in the meeting.                                                                        
HOUSE BILL NO. 509                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An   Act   relating   to    Alaska   children's   trust                                                                   
     registration plates; and providing for an effective                                                                        
     date."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
AMY ERICKSON,  STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI,  testified in                                                                   
support  of HB 509.  She noted  that HB  509 makes  one minor                                                                   
change  to Alaska statute  to allow  Alaska Children's  Trust                                                                   
license  plates to  be made  available to  any commercial  or                                                                   
non-commercial passenger  vehicle, truck, bus,  van, or motor                                                                   
home.   Current  Alaska   statutes  only   allow  owners   of                                                                   
noncommercial vehicles to apply  for and purchase ACT license                                                                   
plates.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
This small change would allow  the Alaska Children's Trust to                                                                   
respond  positively  to  requests  by  industry  and  private                                                                   
business  to purchase  children's  trust  license plates  for                                                                   
fleet vehicles  and to market  sales to an additional  56,500                                                                   
vehicle  owners,  a potential  boost  of $5,650,000  for  the                                                                   
prevention of child abuse and neglect.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
The   Alaska  Children's   Trust  was   established  by   the                                                                   
legislature  in 1988 and  is a  savings account dedicated  to                                                                   
funding  community-initiated   projects  to  eliminate  child                                                                   
abuse and neglect.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
The  trust's funds  grow through  gifts, bequests,  corporate                                                                   
and  individual  contributions,  legislative  appropriations,                                                                   
federal  funds,  and sales  of  heirloom marriage  and  birth                                                                   
certificates as well as children's trust license plates.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Passage of  HB 509  will greatly  expand the trust's  savings                                                                   
account  and vastly  improve  their  ability  to advance  the                                                                   
projects and mission  of eliminating child abuse  and neglect                                                                   
in the state.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair  Bunde questioned  if  the legislation  should  be                                                                   
expanded  to  vanity  plates.  Ms.  Erickson  clarified  that                                                                   
commercial passenger vehicles  are allowed to purchase vanity                                                                   
plates. The  large commercial vehicles  are not. She  did not                                                                   
know  how  much interest  there  would  be in  extending  the                                                                   
legislation.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ROXANNE   STEWART,   LEGISLATIVE   LIAISON,   DEPARTMENT   OF                                                                   
ADMINISTRATION,   provided   information  relating   to   the                                                                   
legislation. She  noted that the Division did  not anticipate                                                                   
a demand  among the larger  vehicles. The Division  would not                                                                   
object to the expansion.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Erickson observed  that the  sponsor  would not  object.                                                                   
Vice-Chair  Bunde   noted  his   intention  to   amended  the                                                                   
legislation on the House Floor.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Foster  MOVED to report CSHB 509  (STA) out of                                                                   
Committee with  the accompanying fiscal note.  There being NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  509 (STA)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  new                                                                   
fiscal impact note by the Department of Administration.                                                                         
HOUSE BILL NO. 515                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An Act relating to missions  and measures to be applied                                                                   
     to  certain  expenditures  by the  executive  branch  of                                                                   
     state  government and  the University  of Alaska  and by                                                                   
     the judicial  branch of state government  from the state                                                                   
     operating  budget for  the fiscal  year ending  June 30,                                                                   
     2003; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Mulder  provided members  with Amendment  1: provide                                                                   
an accessible and impartial forum  for the just resolution of                                                                   
all cases  that come before  it, and  to decide the  cases in                                                                   
accordance with the law, expeditiously and with integrity.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
DENNY DEWITT,  STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE ELDON  MULDER, explained                                                                   
that the  amendment would change  the mission for  the Alaska                                                                   
Court System.  This is  the first year  that the  courts have                                                                   
been  brought  into  the  missions   and  measures  bill.  He                                                                   
referred to the separation of  powers issue and noted that it                                                                   
had been  respected. The Alaska  Court System  is comfortable                                                                   
with  the  measures   but  felt  that,  since   they  have  a                                                                   
constitutional responsibility  for their own  administration,                                                                   
that the  legislation  should reflect  the mission that  they                                                                   
had adopted. It is substantially the same.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Mulder  MOVED to ADOPT  Amendment 1. There  being NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dewitt  reviewed technical  changes. The first  amendment                                                                   
is on  page 23, line  9: delete  "law" and insert  "statute".                                                                   
The language  was recommended  by the  Department of  Law and                                                                   
agreed on by legislative counsel.  "Law" is all encompassing.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Dewitt observed  that there  should be  a comma  between                                                                   
"average" and  "median" on  page 30, line  23; page  31, line                                                                   
31, line 17; and page 33, line 2.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dewitt noted  that the last technical change  occurred on                                                                   
page  46,   line  5:  delete   "rapes"  and  insert   "sexual                                                                   
assaults", which is a defined term.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Mulder MOVED  to ADOPT  technical amendments:  page                                                                   
23, line 9: delete "law" and insert  "statute"; place a comma                                                                   
between "average" and "median"  on page 30, line 23; page 31,                                                                   
line 31, line 17;  and page 33, line 2; and  on page 46, line                                                                   
5: delete "rapes"  and insert "sexual assaults".  There being                                                                   
NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Croft MOVED to ADOPT Amendment 3:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Page 1, line 2 after "Alaska" insert:                                                                                      
     ", the legislative branch of state government,"                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Page 59, line 6                                                                                                            
     1)   Add a new article to read:                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Article 16. Alaska State legislature                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Sec. 154. Alaska State Legislature.                                                                                        
     (a) The mission of the Alaska State Legislature is to                                                                      
     adopt a balanced budget.                                                                                                   
     (h)  The legislature  intends to measure its  success by                                                                   
     whether  the legislature adopts  a budget that  balances                                                                   
     revenue    and   expenditures   without    unsustainable                                                                   
     withdrawals   from  the   State   of  Alaska's   savings                                                                   
     accounts.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Representative Croft  explained that the amendment  would add                                                                   
a  mission and  measure for  the  legislature. He  maintained                                                                   
that  there is  no  more fundamental,  central  task than  to                                                                   
adopt a balanced budget.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Mulder  OBJECTED. He  observed that the  legislature                                                                   
is already  required to adopt  a balanced budget  through the                                                                   
Constitution. The  ability to do  so is contained  within the                                                                   
ability  to withdraw  funds  from the  Constitutional  Budget                                                                   
Reserve.  He  did  not  agree  with  the  evaluation  of  the                                                                   
legislature's  success or  failure  based on  the ability  to                                                                   
adopt a fiscal plan.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies argued in support of the amendment.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Croft, Davies, Hudson                                                                                                 
OPPOSED:  Foster, Harris, Lancaster,  Whitaker, Bunde, Mulder                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Moses was absent from the vote.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION FAILED (3-6).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Foster  MOVED to report CSHB 515  (FIN) out of                                                                   
Committee with  the accompanying fiscal note.  There being NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  515 (FIN)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with a new zero fiscal  note by the                                                                   
House Finance Committee for all departments.                                                                                    
CS FOR SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 28(RES)                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Establishing the Joint Legislative Salmon Industry Task                                                                    
     Force.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR ALAN AUSTERMAN, SPONSOR,  testified in support of SCR                                                                   
28.  He  observed  that  the  legislation  reflects  what  is                                                                   
happening in  the salmon  industry in terms  of a  decline in                                                                   
price  and an influx  of farmed  fish. He  observed that  the                                                                   
issue has been  coming down the road for quite  some time and                                                                   
noted that it has been waiting  for the industry to react and                                                                   
the Administration  to take  on the issue.  He noted  that he                                                                   
has attended four  different salmon summits sponsored  by the                                                                   
Administration,  which have  not resulted  in any action.  He                                                                   
hoped  that legislators  on the  Task Force  would drive  the                                                                   
issue  and find  answers and  make  recommendations that  the                                                                   
legislature  can  implement,  which  would  help  crisis  and                                                                   
indicate actions that the industry can take.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
In response  to a question  by Representative  Croft, Senator                                                                   
Austerman stated that he did not  object to changing the Task                                                                   
Force to eleven members.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair   Mulder   MOVED   to   ADOPT   proposed   committee                                                                   
substitute, work  draft 22-LS1572\P, 4/15/02. There  being NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator Austerman noted that a  change occurred on line 19 of                                                                   
page 3 - 28, which reduced the membership from 13 to 9.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Williams   observed  his   intent  to   change  the                                                                   
membership to 11: four legislative  and seven public members.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator Austerman noted that there  was some concern that the                                                                   
amount  of  work  would  require more  than  13  members.  He                                                                   
thought that 11 members would be sufficient.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Bunde  questioned the effect of 11  members on the                                                                   
fiscal note.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SUE ASPELUND, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,  CORDOVA DISTRICT FISHERMEN                                                                   
UNITED, CORDOVA  testified via  teleconference in  support of                                                                   
CSSCR 28  (RES). She maintained  that representatives  of the                                                                   
salmon industry:  fishermen, tendermen, and  processors, must                                                                   
sit on  the Task  Force. Without  the extensive and  intimate                                                                   
involvement of  the industry at that level,  constituent buy-                                                                   
in of the results  is unlikely. She noted that  it would also                                                                   
be critical to  seek the knowledge and expertise  of resource                                                                   
managers,    seafood    marketers,    economists,    industry                                                                   
regulators,   infrastructure    representatives   and   local                                                                   
governments. She  noted that they  agree with the  comment of                                                                   
NorQuest  President  Terry  Gardiner in  his  paper  entitled                                                                   
"Alaska Seafood  Industry, Radical  5urgery? or Slow  Death."                                                                   
She  maintained  that leaders  are  needed to  represent  the                                                                   
various  segments  of  the  industry.  A forum  needs  to  be                                                                   
established   to  have   serious  discussions   and  a   goal                                                                   
established in  order to develop a broad-based  consensus for                                                                   
change.  Without a  broad base  of consensus,  any plans  for                                                                   
change would be  dead on arrival. She noted  that the Cordova                                                                   
District   Fishermen  United   strongly  believes   that  the                                                                   
Austerman Task  Force as  it passed the  Senate is  the forum                                                                   
described by Mr. Gardiner, and  that consensus in the fishing                                                                   
industry  would  only be  realized  when industry  folks  are                                                                   
significantly  involved  in  identifying   the  problems  and                                                                   
developing the solutions.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Aspelund maintained that formalizing  and supporting this                                                                   
Task  Force is  on appropriate  role for  government to  play                                                                   
given  the importance  of the  industry to  the economies  of                                                                   
dozens  of   coastal  communities,  to  thousands   of  small                                                                   
independent  family   fishing  operations,  to   the  seafood                                                                   
processors and  industry support infrastructures,  and to the                                                                   
tax base of the state.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
PAUL A. SHADURA II, KENAI PENINSULA  FISHERMEN'S ASSOCIATION,                                                                   
KENAI, testified  via teleconference  in support of  CSSCR 28                                                                   
(RES).  He  stressed that  the  task  force is  an  excellent                                                                   
attempt  by   Senator  Austerman   and  the  legislature   in                                                                   
facilitating solutions for the Alaska fishing communities.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Shadura  observed that  at the  salmon summit in  Kodiak,                                                                   
discussion moved  toward the next step in  the revitalization                                                                   
process. Many  felt that the discussions should  continue and                                                                   
that   time  was   of  the   essence.  Many   representatives                                                                   
identified   problems   they   felt  determined   should   be                                                                   
addressed. The  debate of whether there should  be "regional"                                                                   
task forces or a "statewide" task force seemed to be even                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Shadura  maintained that, with financial  considerations,                                                                   
the statewide  concept  should be the  catalyst for  regional                                                                   
task  forces and  that  the committee  must  be comprised  of                                                                   
diverse  representation.  He   emphasized  that  all  Alaskan                                                                   
fishing communities must have  identification within the task                                                                   
force.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Shadura stressed  the  need to  develop  a consensus  of                                                                   
major improvements that will benefit  every fishing community                                                                   
and  the people  of  Alaska. He  acknowledged  that that  the                                                                   
group  could  recommend  hard  decisions  that  would  change                                                                   
Alaskan lifestyles.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     "It  is my  hope  that this  task  force  will design  a                                                                   
     framework  and thus a long  range salmon  fisheries plan                                                                   
     that regions  can develop on and establish  economic and                                                                   
     regulatory stability for  the future of all residents of                                                                   
     the  state. The last  statewide  plan was developed  for                                                                   
     Governor  Hammond   in  approximately  1975.   It  is  a                                                                   
     comprehensive  review for  the fisheries  in the  entire                                                                   
     state.   It  established   goals   and  objectives   for                                                                   
     fisheries  resources and  concurrent  users. Though  not                                                                   
     perfect,   the  design  could   be  identified   as  the                                                                   
     framework for preliminary discussions.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     It  is imperative  that all  ideas,  studies, facts  and                                                                   
     figures will  be available to the committee.  Equally as                                                                   
     important   is  that  the   administrative  arm   should                                                                   
     establish   full   support   in   supplying   all   it's                                                                   
     information  gathering and  expertise to facilitate  the                                                                   
     task force.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JERRY MADDEN,  UNITED SOUTHEAST  ALASKA GILLNETTERS,  JUNEAU,                                                                   
testified in support of the legislation.  He noted that there                                                                   
is some  concern regarding  representatives from  the private                                                                   
sector. He  suggested that the  language be more  specific to                                                                   
address the appointment of commercial fishermen.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
TAPE HFC 02 - 83, Side B                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
DAVID BEDFORD, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,  SOUTHEAST ALASKA SEINERS,                                                                   
JUNEAU,  testified in  support of the  legislation.  He noted                                                                   
that  10  years ago  a  Bristol  Bay  permit was  worth  $250                                                                   
thousand  dollars;  today  it  would be  worth  $25  thousand                                                                   
dollars. In  the course  of 10 years  the expectation  on the                                                                   
fishery  has dropped  to a  dime on  a dollar.  The price  of                                                                   
salmon has  gone from over  a dollar a  pound to .40  cents a                                                                   
pound in  the past year.  There have been parallel  collapses                                                                   
in salmon prices  elsewhere. Processors have  laid-off dozens                                                                   
of purse  seine fisherman,  some of  which have been  fishing                                                                   
for scores of years. He emphasized  that any solution must be                                                                   
built on the communities that rely on the fisheries.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JERRY MCCUNE,  UNITED FISHERMEN OF ALASKA,  JUNEAU, testified                                                                   
in support of  the legislation. He stressed  that problems in                                                                   
the fishing industry run from  infrastructure, to harvest and                                                                   
processing.  He  felt that  the  forum  would help  turn  the                                                                   
industry around and acknowledged  that it would take a lot of                                                                   
hard work.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Mulder MOVED  to changed the  representation  to 11                                                                   
members with 7  public members. There being  NO OBJECTION, it                                                                   
was so ordered.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Austerman noted  that the  original legislation  set                                                                   
out  regional   representation.  Discussion  in   the  Senate                                                                   
expressed   concern  that  the   best-qualified  persons   be                                                                   
appointed  to  the  Task  Force.  The  intent  was  to  allow                                                                   
appointments  to be made  by the  Senate President  and House                                                                   
Speaker based  on submissions and recommendations  from other                                                                   
legislators or  institutions. The  desire is to  have persons                                                                   
with  financial  and  economics  expertise  relating  to  the                                                                   
fishing industry. Small and large  processors, the commercial                                                                   
industry and other entitles need to be involved.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams  added that  he would  like to see  someone                                                                   
with working knowledge of the  world economy to identify ways                                                                   
to compete in the current climate.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Austerman pointed out  that it would be impossible to                                                                   
get everyone with an interest  at the table. He stressed that                                                                   
there is  a large  amount of  work to  be done and  indicated                                                                   
that  the Task  Force could  appoint  subcommittees that  may                                                                   
include others not on the Task Force.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Mulder agreed  that the Task Force  number should be                                                                   
kept small,  functional and focused  on production.  He asked                                                                   
if the expertise of the Board of Fish would be utilized.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Austerman   agreed  that  the  Board   of  Fish  has                                                                   
appropriate  information and  should be  consulted. He  noted                                                                   
that  the Legislature  with the  help  of the  Task Force  is                                                                   
going to have to push for a result.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Lancaster assumed that  the Task  Force would                                                                   
be broad based.  He noted that there are  questions regarding                                                                   
over production.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams  interjected that the Administration  would                                                                   
be  engaged  in  the  task  force  work.  A  subcommittee  of                                                                   
fishermen  from throughout  the state  could work along  with                                                                   
the Administration.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Harris  noted  that there  are  disagreements                                                                   
within  the fishing  industry  and  expressed  the hope  that                                                                   
there would  be cooperation. He  referred to the  fiscal note                                                                   
and  questioned the  $110 thousand  dollar appropriation  for                                                                   
travel. Senator Austerman thought  that the number may be low                                                                   
by the  time task  force members  are moved  to meetings  and                                                                   
travel  of experts  needed to  address issues  such as  anti-                                                                   
trust  is funded.  He indicated  that one-year  might not  be                                                                   
enough time to  address the long-range vision.  The intent is                                                                   
to stabilize the  industry so that it is there  15 - 30 years                                                                   
from now.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hudson  agreed with the size of  the board. He                                                                   
noted that large boards become  overloaded with logistics. He                                                                   
noted  that the  activity  could be  significant,  especially                                                                   
with  a  new  administration.  He  emphasized  that  existing                                                                   
intelligence  should  be  tapped  into, such  as  the  Alaska                                                                   
Seafood Marketing  Institute. He  added that sports,  guiding                                                                   
and commercial fishermen should all be included.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative  John  Davies  MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment  2.                                                                   
Amendment 2  would require that  one of the four  legislative                                                                   
members  be  appointed  from the  minority.  There  being  NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Austerman   stressed  that  the  Task   Force  would                                                                   
indicate that  legislators could come up with  creative ideas                                                                   
and  regulatory  changes  to   make  the  industry  work.  He                                                                   
expressed the hope  that the result would be  a separate task                                                                   
to address all  of the sustainable fisheries in  the state of                                                                   
Alaska in order  to generate jobs. Salmon is only  one of the                                                                   
fisheries in crisis.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative Foster MOVED to  report HCS CSSCR 28 (FIN) out                                                                   
of Committee with  the accompanying fiscal note.  There being                                                                   
NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HCS CSSCR 28 (FIN)  was REPORTED out of Committee  with a "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with  a new  fiscal impact  note by                                                                   
the Legislative Affairs Agency.                                                                                                 
HOUSE BILL NO. 252                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An Act relating to the construction of certain                                                                            
     statutes relating to children; relating to the scope of                                                                    
     duty and standard of care for persons who provide                                                                          
     services to certain children and families; and                                                                             
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hudson restated  his Motion to ADOPT Amendment                                                                   
1.                                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 11.  Sections 1 and 2 of this Act take effect                                                                       
     under AS 01.10.070(c).                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 12.  Sections 8 and 10 of this Act take effect                                                                      
     July 1, 2002.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 12.  Sections 3-6 and 9 of this Act take effect                                                                     
     July 1, 2003.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hudson  noted that there would  be substantive                                                                   
changes with the  legislation. The effective date  of July 1,                                                                   
2002  would  be  too fast  without  additional  funding.  The                                                                   
Department would  have to perform intensive  family services.                                                                   
The  amendment  would  allow  the  study  to  occur  and  the                                                                   
services  to   be  provided  subsequent  to   the  study.  He                                                                   
maintained  that  the  amendment  would  put  a  proper  time                                                                   
sequence into  the bill to  effectively accomplish  the goal.                                                                   
Section 10 would  implement the study. Section  8 defines the                                                                   
program.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
THERESA TANOURY,  FAMILY SERVICES ADMINISTRATOR,  DIVISION OF                                                                   
FAMILY AND  YOUTH SERVICES, DEPARTMENT  OF HEALTH  AND SOCIAL                                                                   
SERVICES discussed  the study. The legislation  would require                                                                   
the Division to  study who would be eligible  for services in                                                                   
each of  the regions and who  would benefit from  these types                                                                   
of services.  She stressed  that the  Division does  not have                                                                   
the funding  to implement the  services under  their existing                                                                   
appropriation.    Implementation    under   their    existing                                                                   
appropriation  would cause  undue hardship  to many  families                                                                   
and children that receive these  types of services. She spoke                                                                   
in support of the amendment.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Croft MOVED  to ADOPT  Amendment 2.  Co-Chair                                                                   
Williams OBJECTED.  Representative  Croft explained  that the                                                                   
intent of Amendment 2 would be  to clarify the limitation and                                                                   
liability  section. Under  the current  statute the  state is                                                                   
not liable  for violations of  the provisions. The  intent is                                                                   
to prevent huge liability costs,  by making every conceivable                                                                   
technical   violation  of  the   statute  actionable,   while                                                                   
preserving  the ability  of children and  families to  assure                                                                   
that things are done properly.  The amendment states that the                                                                   
department  has a  duty to  exercise  reasonable care  toward                                                                   
children  in its  custody.  The  amendment also  states  that                                                                   
failure  to comply  with a provision  of the  title does  not                                                                   
constitute a  basis for civil  liability. Children  and their                                                                   
families  would still  be able  to  use file  under the  CINA                                                                   
proceedings.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss stressed that the language  in Amendment 2 continues                                                                   
to  protect  the  government  from  full  accountability  for                                                                   
wrongful  conduct  and could  have  a devastating  affect  on                                                                   
children,  families and  parents  when a  child  is in  state                                                                   
custody.  She  maintained  that   the  amendment  allows  the                                                                   
government  to escape  liability for failure  to comply  with                                                                   
the   provisions   of   the    title.   She   observed   that                                                                   
Representative Coghill's legislation  addresses timelines but                                                                   
also acknowledged  that the state  has the responsibility  of                                                                   
physical  care and  control of  the  child, determination  of                                                                   
where and with whom the child  shall live, the right and duty                                                                   
to  protect, nurture,  train and  discipline  the child;  the                                                                   
duty of  providing the  child with  food, shelter,  education                                                                   
and medical  care; and the  right and responsibility  to make                                                                   
the  decisions  of  financial   significance  concerning  the                                                                   
child. She  concluded that the  department would not  have to                                                                   
comply  with the  legislative  standards  and the  department                                                                   
could not  be held  monetarily accountable  if their  actions                                                                   
hurt families.  She questioned  what provisions of  the title                                                                   
the legislature  not want  the department  to be  accountable                                                                   
for.  She   acknowledged  the   department's  difficulty   in                                                                   
following court  dates, but emphasized  that they need  to be                                                                   
accountable  for  the  duties   and  standards  to  children.                                                                   
Parents  are held accountable  and their  punishment  is much                                                                   
more severe.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Lauterbach  observed that  the  second sentence  of  the                                                                   
amendment needs  clarification. She  questioned who  would be                                                                   
covered  by  the  "factor  to  comply."  There  are  lots  of                                                                   
entities  covered   under  the  title:  including   shelters,                                                                   
programs  for  run away  children,  courts and  schools.  She                                                                   
observed that the Alaska Temporary  Assistance Program, civil                                                                   
commitment, interstate compact  on the placement of children,                                                                   
delinquency  institutions  and childcare  facility  licensure                                                                   
come  under  the  title. The  amendment  would  provide  that                                                                   
failure to  comply with  any of the  provisions would  not be                                                                   
the basis  for civil liability,  if the family  involved were                                                                   
also served by CINA.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative John Davies thought  that the department would                                                                   
still be accountable through the  legal system. He questioned                                                                   
the  remedy  of civil  damages.  He  did  not see  the  nexus                                                                   
between  civil  liability  and  the care  of  the  child.  He                                                                   
pointed out that the removal of  children from parents is not                                                                   
meant as a punishment, but is  intended to protect the child.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Bunde  questioned the  threshold for  civil action                                                                   
against  the state.  Ms. Lauterbach  clarified  that Title  9                                                                   
addresses  the   distinction  between  a   discretionary  and                                                                   
mandatory duty.  If the state  under takes  to do an  act, it                                                                   
must act without negligence. It  would have to be a mandatory                                                                   
act. The  decision to put  a sign on  a dangerous  road could                                                                   
not be  sued, but  the failure  to put  the sign up  properly                                                                   
could be litigated. The choice  of services is discretionary,                                                                   
but if  they decide  to provide  a service,  than it  must be                                                                   
provided without negligence.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss  emphasized that  the Division  of Family  and Youth                                                                   
Services  is on  the same  legal  ground as  any other  state                                                                   
entity.  This is  the  only place  where  specific law  would                                                                   
state  that there  is  no duty  or  standard  of care;  other                                                                   
entities are not exempted from  duty or standard of care. The                                                                   
agency would  be dealt with  differently than any  other. She                                                                   
observed that parents might come  to two or three visitations                                                                   
in a row without being able to see their kids.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Croft, Davies                                                                                                         
OPPOSED:  Bunde,    Foster,   Harris,   Hudson,    Lancaster,                                                                   
          Whitaker, Williams, Mulder                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Moses was absent from the vote.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION FAILED (2-8).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair  Bunde referred  to  section 4  and questioned  if                                                                   
there would be a separation of power issue.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     If the  court concludes that continuation  of reasonable                                                                   
     efforts of  the type described  in  (a) of  this section                                                                   
     are  not  in  the  best   interests  of  the  child  and                                                                   
     intensive   family   preservation  services   were   not                                                                   
     provided in  the case, the court shall  enumerate in the                                                                   
     record the reasons the services were not provided.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Lauterbach observed  that the  decision is  left to  the                                                                   
court. The proposed  committee substitute would  ask that the                                                                   
findings be in the record.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative Foster  MOVED to report CSHB 252  (FIN) out of                                                                   
Committee with the accompanying fiscal note.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  252 (FIN)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  "do                                                                   
pass"  recommendation and  with  previously published  fiscal                                                                   
note: HSS (#1).                                                                                                                 
HOUSE BILL NO. 504                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An Act relating to the wages of people working in the                                                                     
     fisheries business."                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hudson  MOVED to report CSHB 504  (FIN) out of                                                                   
Committee with the accompanying  fiscal note.  Representative                                                                   
John Davies  OBJECTED.  He thought that  the Committee  would                                                                   
need to rescind the previous action.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MIKE TIBBLES, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE  WILLIAMS, explained that                                                                   
according   to  discussions  with   Tamara  Cook,   Director,                                                                   
Legislative Legal and Research  Services, Legislative Affairs                                                                   
Agency,  committees   are  charged  with   disbursing  bills.                                                                   
Therefore  the questioned  comes  to whether  or  not a  bill                                                                   
needs to be renewed or action rescinded.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
TAPE HFC 02 - 84, Side A                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Tibbles stressed that the  Committee has the authority to                                                                   
act on bills. Discussion continued regarding the motion.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Croft spoke to  the bill. He maintained  that                                                                   
it  ignores the  substantial  difference  between remote  and                                                                   
non-remote sites  and would be a major step  backward because                                                                   
it provides a major exception to the minimum wage law.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Representative John Davies spoke  against the legislation. He                                                                   
noted that legislators that are  more than 50 miles away from                                                                   
their  homes receive  a  different per  diem  rate. The  same                                                                   
distinction  needs to  be  made for  workers  at the  minimum                                                                   
wage.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Harris  spoke  against  the  legislation.  He                                                                   
thought  that the legislation  would open  exceptions  to the                                                                   
minimum wage  for other entities.  He expressed  concern that                                                                   
other employees would be impacted  when going to places where                                                                   
housing is not available.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Lancaster   expressed   concern   with   the                                                                   
legislation. He  questioned what  would happen to  the person                                                                   
that lives in a tent.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams emphasized that  the legislation would help                                                                   
commercial fishermen by keeping processors in business.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Bunde, Foster, Hudson,  Lancaster, Mulder, Williams                                                                   
OPPOSED: Whitaker, Croft, Davies, Harris                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Moses was absent from the vote.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED (6-4).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  504 (FIN)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with  new zero  fiscal note  by the                                                                   
House  Finance  Committee for  the  Department  of Labor  and                                                                   
Workforce Development.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  504 (FIN)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with a new zero fiscal  note by the                                                                   
House  Finance  Committee for  the  Department  of Labor  and                                                                   
Workforce Development.                                                                                                          
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 3:57 PM                                                                                            

Document Name Date/Time Subjects